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[pct-l] Program Update / Hiking speed

For those of you that were waiting, the planning program now gives you the
option to hike X amount of hours for the first X amount of days.  This is
just an option in the program, it isn't required.  It seems the two biggest
reasons for people wanting the delay option added were:

1) Wouldn't be able to hike 20 miles per day the first few weeks.
2) Would get to Kennedy Meadows too soon.  (Before Ray's recommendation of
the middle of June)


If and when I do the PCT again, I wouldn't worry about going slower the
first few weeks, since I should be trained in tip top shape and be used to
20-25 mile days.  (Besides, you have to pull 20 miles your first day
anyway....for the first safe camping at Lake Morena.)

To Sasha and anyone else interested:

Me personally, I think if you do a fair amount of pre-hike training
(throwing the pack on and hiking stairs and trails), your average MPD will
stay the same.  When I started the PCT last year, I didn't train AT ALL,
short of riding my bike around Seattle and running around Green Lake twice a
week.  Once I was on the PCT, I was doing about 16 MPD, and it took me a
couple weeks or so to get up over 20 MPD.

In the Sierra's, I don't think I ever did over 20 miles per day.  There is a
lot of elevation gain in the Sierras (basically a pass per day), so you
don't make good time....which means most hikers are running on fumes into
Vermillion or Red's Meadow. 

Another thing to consider about the Sierras is the amount of snow that fell
the previous winter.  It seems like most hikers don't consider snowtravel in
the Sierras, since it is usually only on the passes.  Sometimes though, it
can be a differenct story.  I remember Brick Robbins posting about his hike
through the Sierras when the snowpack was %205 of normal that year, and it
being a tough experience.  Usually when the snow is this bad, most
thru-hikers put off their hike for a year (which is why there were only 1 or
2? thru-hikers in 1995).

For food I carried about a day's worth for every 20 miles of trail.  If I
ran out of food, tough.  There were a few times where I had no food going
into a resupply,  It isn't that bad to walk a 10 mile day without food, into
a resupply stop...you can eat there.  (Except for that time into Crater
Lake, I had to walk 30 miles with no food)


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